South African army deployed to halt gang violence

South African soldiers are patrolling the streets of some Cape Town suburbs, which have been plagued by gang violence.

More than 40 people were killed last weekend.

It has taken troops just over a week to deploy to help reinforce police in their fight against a surge in the murder rate.

With armoured vehicles and heavily armed soldiers, the army arrived on Thursday to some fanfare, but also concern from residents.

They’ve been conducting stop and search operations in Manenberg, an area known for gang violence.

Troops will be deployed to 10 troubled suburbs on the Cape Flats.

Mortuary statistics show a sharp increase in the number deaths in the area, with more than 1,000 people killed this year alone.

Last month, six police officers from the anti-gang unit were shot and seriously wounded while on patrol.

This is not the first time the defence force is being deployed. Four years ago, the army accompanied police and other government departments on an anti-crime operation.

But critics say the army may not be the solution to the violence that has plagued the Cape Flats for years.

Source: BBC

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